Pumpkin cheesecake is a beloved Thanksgiving tradition in my family. Since I was a little girl, my mom has always slipped a cheesecake layer underneath her annual pumpkin pies… and everyone loves her for it!
The layering is essential, if you ask me. I am not satisfied with the mere pumpkin-flavored cheesecakes of the world, which homogenize together into less than the sum of their parts. This dessert shines from the contrast between rich vanilla cheesecake, and a pure, silky, spiced pumpkin custard layered on top.
If you don’t already know, believe it: Instant Pot is a secret weapon for effortlessly perfect cheesecakes. This fall, let your pressure cooker help you serve up this irresistible seasonal treat!
(Your Instant Pot can also help you make dessert even more special, with your own DIY homemade pumpkin puree… See: Insta-Pumpkin!)
Three Perfect Layers:
Layer 1: Ginger Snap Crust
Layer 2: My Favorite Cheesecake
The cheesecake layer uses my Greek Yogurt Cheesecake recipe, which replaces half of the cream cheese with yogurt and is still super creamy and delicious. If you have a different Instant Pot cheesecake recipe that you prefer, you can certainly cut it in half and use it here instead.
Layer 3: The Best Pumpkin Pie
Finally, the pumpkin pie layer is a scaled-down version of the traditional, tried-and-true pumpkin pie recipe that my (superstar cook) mom had made for years, with one small exception. This recipe is made without evaporated milk; I use heavy cream instead. Because the custard volume is so small for this Instant Pot sized cheesecake, it annoys me to open a can of evaporated milk and only use a little splash. By using cream instead, I get to whip up the rest of the carton to serve with the Thanksgiving pie spread. Practical!
Gluten Free Instant Pot Pumpkin Cheesecake?!
Yes, this can be made without gluten! I’ve included a recipe for my favorite gluten free crust made with almonds. I regularly make DIY almond milk, and the leftover pulp can be dried to make coarse crumbs that are just perfect for this job. If you don’t have a surplus of leftover almond pulp around the house like I do, I think the closest substitute would be a defatted almond meal product.
Add warm spices to recreate the ginger snap flavor, OR try a chocolate one instead!! You can find that version on my Dark Chocolate Greek Yogurt Cheesecake recipe.
Healthy Instant Pot Pumpkin Cheesecake?!
Healthy-ish! Since my Greek Yogurt Cheesecake recipe swaps half of the cream cheese for yogurt, it has a bit less fat and more protein than your average cheesecake. It is certainly still an indulgence.
What about the added sugar? This dessert is rich, but not at all overly sweet. Depending on your crust/cookies, each slice ends up containing only about 1 teaspoon of added sugar. Very reasonable sweet treat, if you ask this dietitian!
Fueled By Instant Pot is a member of the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, and earns a commission for purchases made through the following links:
[Instant Pot] Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake
Ginger Snap Crust Option:
- 4 ounces ginger snaps crushed to yield about 1 1/2 cups of crumbs
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
Almond Crust Option:
- 1 cup (80 grams) defatted almond meal (I use dried pulp leftover from homemade almond milk)
- 1 tablespoon (10 grams) cornstarch
- 1/4 teaspoon (1 gram) salt
- 4 tablespoons coconut oil melted
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 ounces regular (not low-fat) cream cheese softened
- 3/4 cup whole milk Greek yogurt
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 large egg
Pumpkin Pie Filling:
- 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 large egg
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
Start with the crust:
- In a large bowl, stir together all of the crust ingredients. Prepare a 7-inch springform pan by lightly coating it with oil, then spread the crumb mixture onto the bottom, pressing firmly into an even thickness.
Make the cheesecake layer:
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the softened cream cheese, Greek yogurt, sugar and vanilla. Using a whisk attachment, whip together until very smooth; try to minimize any lumps of cream cheese. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the mixing bowl to assure the filling is well-mixed, then add the eggs, one at a time, mixing until just combined. Pour the filling over the crust in the springform pan, and carefully smooth the top with a rubber spatula. Place the pan into the freezer to chill for 10-15 minutes while preparing the next layer, to make it easier to avoid mixing up the fillings when pouring the next layer.
Make the pumpkin layer:
- Combine all of the remaining ingredients, and whisk until smooth. Very gently pour this pumpkin custard mix over the back of a spoon onto the chilled cheesecake layer. Pour slowly and take care to avoid mixing the two fillings.
- Place a trivet rack into the pressure cooker, and pour in 1 cup of water. Place the cheesecake on top of the rack and close the lid. Set the valve to sealing position, and cook on high pressure for 30 minutes (on the Instant Pot, select “Steam” and use the default power setting).
- After the cooking time is up and the pressure has released naturally, open the lid and use the trivet handles to lift out the pan. If water has settled on top of the cheesecake, gently blot any excess with a paper towel. Allow the cheesecake to cool on a rack at room temperature for 1-2 hours, then transfer it to the refrigerator to chill completely (at least 4 hours).
More Instant Pot Pumpkin Recipes
Hungry for more pressure cooking this pumpkin season? Try these!